Our Approach: SAFE, HAPPY AND LEARNING

Years of experience have taught us that three words sum up what parents seek when choosing a nursery school

That’s why they’re the guiding principles for management and staff at the Old School House Nursery. It is our policy to provide for the children’s physical, intellectual, emotional and social needs and in doing so to ensure that all the children are SAFE, HAPPY AND LEARNING.

Our curriculum incorporates the Early Years Foundation Stage and is based on our educational policy of learning through well-planned play. We provide an exciting, stimulating and structured environment which includes our Forest Schools (indoors and outdoors), planned around and fulfilling all of the children’s needs. This allows us to help the children build a solid foundation for future life, in school and beyond. Here’s how we put these three most important principles into practice...

SAFE

Your child is under the personal supervision of highly-trained, security-checked professional nursery nurses. From the moment that your children arrive at the Old School House until you collect them, you can rest-assured they’re in safe hands.

And there’s the added assurance of CCTV and an electronic security door at the main entrances of both nurseries, together with all-weather impact-absorbing play areas and nursery rooms where safety was the first design consideration.

Management and Staff carefully follow the Nursery's detailed Policies and Procedures in order to maintain safety and security for your child at Nursery. Copies of these can be found in the reception areas at both nurseries.

The Old School House Nurseries are regulated and inspected by Ofsted.

HAPPY

There’s a well-stocked play environment for all ages. Add to that a varied programme of activities and you can see why the smiles on the faces of our children tell their own story.

Nursery is the first stage in a long process of education. We at the Old School House do everything to ensure it’s a happy time – and one that leaves your child better equipped to make the transition to school.

Evidence shows that children with a nursery background cope better when starting school. We make it our business to ensure every child, whatever his or her individual needs, finds a home from home at the Old School House.

LEARNING

Constructive play, ever-changing programmes of activities and a balanced curriculum ensure a sound start to your child’s education. Exciting programmes of activities complements the high quality environments.

Groups are small (average staff/children ratio 1;3) so individual attention is always at hand. We cover all the important areas elements at this crucial stage of development – drawing, painting, numeracy, literacy, computer skills, science and cookery to name but a few. There are also well stocked libraries and children from an early age are encouraged to choose and take books home.

An exciting programme of activities complements the high quality environment. Both nurseries offer daily Forest Schools, French classes, weekly music sessions, short tennis and regular trips out from strolls in the parks and the Botanical Gardens to boarding a bus to visit the local library. The babies don’t miss out – they are often taken out for walks in the buggies and are wrapped up well if it is cold. We believe that our children should engage with the local environment as much as possible.

All nursery pupils embark on a variety of themed schemes of work on a 2 year rolling programme. We also emphasise the importance of other life skills for the future – like learning good manners, self-discipline, concentration and awareness of the natural environment.
 

PRINCIPLES INTO PRACTICE

Safe, Happy and Learning; here?s how we put these three important principles into practice...

Our youngest pupils, from age three months upwards, are cared for in our Specialist Baby Units. The Specialist Baby Units comprise of Rainbow and Garden Room at both sites. Both sites boast separate unique sleep rooms which are closely monitored. The unique demands of baby care call for special skills – and so all staff in the Specialist Baby Units are trained and hand-picked for the job. It’s here that children stay until they take those first few steps.

The babies then progress to the Nursery Classes at Benty Lane and to the Blue Room at Endcliffe.

Finally, our pre-school units represent the vital last stages of the Old School House. These units are split into Blue, Yellow, Red and Green Rooms at Benty Lane and Blue, Yellow and Red Rooms at Endcliffe. Our pre-school units are split like this to keep class sizes to ideal levels.

That’s not all, because we also run a breakfast and after-school club, French club and holiday scheme at Benty Lane, just the thing for the needs of busy working parents.
 

Our Accreditations

OFSTED

OFSTED is the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills. Ofsted regulate and inspect both our nurseries to ensure our compliance with the National Welfare Standards. Both our nurseries have excellent Ofsted reports with Outstanding 2012/2103 at our Benty Lane Site. You can find our latest reports on our individual nursery pages or on the Ofsted website itself www.ofsted.gov.uk.

Our Ofsted certificates of registration can be found displayed on the walls in both of our nurseries in the reception areas.

NDNA

We are a member of the National Day Nurseries Association (‘NDNA’). This is a national charity and membership association specifically for nurseries. Their vision is a society where all children and families receive the best quality care and learning that enables them to reach their full potential. Their mission is to support the delivery of best-quality care and early learning for children across the UK. They do this by working in partnership with nurseries like ourselves, local authorities, national government and a range of partners to develop an environment in which early learning and care can flourish.

INVESTORS IN PEOPLE

The Old School House Nursery is proud to announce that they achieved Investors in People (‘IIP’) Gold accreditation in October 2015.

Being accredited as an Investor in People means that we are committed to raise standards and improve performance through our staff by capitalizing on their talents and strengths. This is a worldwide standard and our continued commitment to it through it’s framework ensures that our teams are developed and supported through continuous training and evaluation.

We were first recognized as an Investor in People in February 2003. The last review in October 2014 highlighted many areas of good practice along with further suggestions for development. The overall aim of the Old School House is to be recognised as ‘Outstanding’ in all areas. With this focus the Nursery went on a journey to achieve ‘IIP’ Gold Accreditation to recognize outstanding people management practice. This was achieved within 12 months of the last full review in 2014.

The Senior Management Team at the Nursery are totally committed to continuous improvement and will continue to develop to ensure that it fulfills it’s aim of being ‘Outstanding in all areas’.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

To summarise the Investors in People Assessment Report Top up to Gold dated 12th October 2015, our qualified Assessor, Hayley J Allen, commented as follows:-

Without doubt the owners/senior management team of the Old School House Nursery are committed to being outstanding in all areas. Being an outstanding employer through excellence in people management practice to attract and retain the best staff and continue to provide outstanding nursery provision for all children across the two settings (Benty Lane and Endcliffe).

The 3 Key areas of development since the last IIP review in 2014 have been round the introduction of core values, leadership and management charters and recognition and reward programmes. These have had a positive impact on staff focusing everyone on a way of working and recognising and rewarding staffs contributions making people valued and committed to the success of the organisation continuing to deliver outstanding nursery provision.

The staff were positive throughout the discussions and although already believed their nursery as a good place to work – confirmed that it was even better now. Everyone involved in the IIP discussions said they would recommend the Old School House Nursery as a place to work and a place to bring children. In fact several members of staff said their children have been or currently attend the Nursery.
   

CACHE

The Nursery has been accredited as a CACHE (Council for Awards in Care, Health and Education) Training Centre since 2012. CACHE is UK’s only specialist awarding organisation for the children, adult and health care sectors with a portfolio of qualifications ranging from Entry to Level 5.  As a CACHE Accredited Training Centre we offer NVQ Diplomas in Childcare and Education, Playworkers, Management Training, Paediatric 1st Aid, Safeguarding, Food Hygiene to our own employees and externally.

Our Cache Centre Audit - 13th April 2016 Stated
"The Learners work is produced to an excellent standard. It is beautifully presented in well organised portfolios. Feedback from the Assessors to the Learners is detailed and encouraging which supports progression throughout the qualification."

In addition to the Cache training Centre NQT (Newly Qualified Teachers) can be assessed for their probationary teaching year in conjunction with the DFE (Department for Education).
 

OSH